The 3 Best Customer Service Email Management Software For Customer and Sales Teams
How do the best customer service and sales teams keep track of all the myriad customer requests, support tickets and sales queries flooding into their inboxes?
Email is one of the most powerful and widely used tools at companies’ disposal, providing a direct channel between the business and its current and prospective customers.
However, email can be a weak spot for companies that lack visibility into their teams’ performance. Customer complaints about a lack of response to an emailed support request or a days-long wait for a response to a sales enquiry can quickly become a headache for customer and sales teams.
The answer to how the best customer service and sales teams use email as an effective tool to maintain elevated levels of customer service lies in their use of data.
And in this guide, we will look at three of the leading data-rich customer service email management tools that you can use to supercharge your teams’ performance, namely timetoreply, Freshdesk, and Zendesk.
The Importance of Email Analytics in Customer Service
Managing workloads and scheduling can be challenging without access to data that highlights busy times, individual workloads, spike in activity, average email response times and more.
Without a customer service email management tool, many teams will land back in their inbox trying to sift through old mails or hoping to resolve customer queries on the fly.
An email analytics tool can improve the quality of customer service your teams are able to provide by highlighting areas of high and low performance.
Equipped with accurate data over the email performance of their teams, companies can make smarter decisions about how to ensure timely and effective replies to customer queries and how best to convert prospects into customers, achieving higher levels of customer satisfaction and driving bottom-line results.
Timetoreply, for example, gives customer-facing teams the ability to mark email threads as ‘closed’, enabling managers to see which requests have been resolved and which still need resolution.
Pros of using email management software for Outlook & Office365
For users of Microsoft’s popular Outlook and Office365 email productivity suites, keeping track of customer emails and using data to make smart decisions over customer-facing email activities can be tricky. The platform simply doesn’t offer much in terms of data-driven insights into individual and team email usage.
Teams using an email management solution for Outlook can more easily see which emails are resolved and which need a response. Companies can track average reply times and link team email performance to internal KPIs to improve the overall productivity and effectiveness of customer-facing teams.
Daily, weekly, and monthly reports such as those produced by timetoreply, can help companies keep track of their sales and customer service teams’ performance and receive real-time alerts to ensure every important email receives a timely response.
Pros of using email management software for Gsuite & Gmail
Similar to Outlook, companies using Gmail and Gsuite often lack granular insight into the email performance of customer-facing sales and support teams.
Without the ability to identify potential weak spots in their customer service efforts, companies may struggle to meet SLAs and internal KPIs as managers would have little visibility over key aspects of their teams’ email activity.
An email management tool for Gmail and Gsuite can equip managers with essential insights that can help companies to close gaps in their customer-facing and sales outreach activities. By using accurate data into their teams’ performance, companies can ensure no important customer communication slips through the cracks.
3 Best Customer Service Email Management in 2022
1 Timetoreply – Best software for all platforms (Gmail, Outlook)
Timetoreply is a SaaS tool for sales, support and customer success teams looking to improve their customer service levels and boost deal closure rates. Our powerful customer service email management tool provides vital reporting and analytics functionality for teams operating in Gmail and Outlook email environments.
Timetoreply is quick to deploy with no installation required and can start providing actionable insights within minutes of activation. Our solution connects to your teams’ mailboxes to measure reply times, email volumes, peak hours and other metrics that can bring greater transparency to your customer-facing operations and drive improvements across the board.
In fact, our customers have improved their response times from 7 hours to 2 hours and their response rates from 65% to 90%+ within 8 hours of activating timetoreply.
Contrary to other customer service email management solutions, timetoreply can be activated in both the Gmail and Outlook email environments, empowering managers with data-rich insights that can inform customer service and sales strategies.
Team members can mark customer conversations as ‘closed’ directly from their inbox without the complexity of a third-party ticketing system.
Our world-class security and regulatory compliance capabilities also ensures the highest levels of data privacy and security, while a powerful API unlocks integrations with a host of popular third-party business applications.
We have seen response times in particular groups go from 7 hours to 2 hours with the timetoreply data. This is getting information to our partners quicker and streamlining the way we work.
Easy integration with Microsoft365 and Outlook to bring powerful analytics and reporting to your business email communication, as well as simple integration with Gmail and Google Workspaces that can immediately equip companies with actionable analytics on their team’s email response times and other vital metrics.
Email analytics that provide granular detail and powerful reporting capabilities for individual, shared or team mailboxes, including:
- total conversation
- internal conversations
- inbound and outbound conversations
- conversations with replies
- completion ratio
- average initial reply time
- average overall reply time
- domain or SLA reporting that tracks how well your team is responding to mails from a specific domain
Email management software that enables you to:
- see exactly how many emails you need to reply to and how long each email has been awaiting a reply
- track total business email volumes
- close email conversations from your inbox without the need for a separate ticketing system
- track average email reply times and make improvements in the speed at which your team replies
- optimize your email communications with actionable reports, proactive alerts and improved email response times
Timetoreply offers a range of pricing options to suit the needs of any team, with monthly or discounted annual payment plans and a 15-day zero-obligation trial period that gives you the flexibility to test the power of our platform without having to input credit card details.
For smaller companies of five to ten users, the Starter package gives them vital tools to get started on the road to improve customer service email management. This includes core email analytics, four report types, a dashboard for one manager, three scheduled reports, 20 alerts per mailbox per month, and data export to PDF. The cost is only $14 per mailbox per month.
Our Pro package is for larger teams of ten or more people that want to enhance their reporting capabilities and have access to convenient data exports.
The Pro package offers all the benefits of the Starter package, as well as an additional six report types (for a total of ten), an additional four users with dashboard access (for a total of five), twenty scheduled reports, fifty alerts per mailbox per month, team level reporting, shared and team mailboxes, leave management, and data export to PDF and CSV formats. The Pro packages is costed at $21 per mailbox per month.
For large or growing teams, our Elite package offers the full suite of timetoreply functionality as well as access to a broad range of BI tools via our API.
Elite users have all the functionality of our Pro package as well as up to 50 dashboard users, 60 scheduled reports, 100 alerts per mailbox per month, and API access with unlimited API calls, all for only $28 per mailbox per month.
Timetoreply also offers an Enterprise package for teams of at least 50 mailboxes, which comes with a comprehensive enterprise support plan that includes 24-hour support, SLA guarantees, customization, and onboarding and training support.
Freshdesk is an online cloud-based customer service software solution providing companies with help desk support. The platform includes smart automated workflows that assist companies with resolving customer requests quicker.
Freshdesk is ideal for B2C brands that receive high volumes of incoming requests. It’s a popular choice among companies that are scaling up and need tools to improve customer engagement and ease customer management.
Freshdesk integrates social media, phone numbers, live chat, and website conversations for a convenient single view of customer requests.
Built-in messaging enables easy engagement with customer queries via the customer’s channel of choice, while AI-powered chatbots guide customers to resolve queries more quickly.
A contact centre solution also assists the process of resolving customer queries and improves call productivity. Freshdesk is also good for collaborative customer service as all queries are handled via its single platform.
What Freshdesk is missing:
Freshdesk is a feature-rich solution, but users must go all-in on the platform if they wish to enjoy the full suite of features and benefits.
This may require significant infrastructure investment to migrate email activity to Freshdesk and require users to overcome a steep learning curve.
Its limited reporting capabilities is also not on par with solutions such as timetoreply, and customizing reports requires extensive product knowledge and training to master.
Freshdesk is also designed more for B2C companies, so teams serving B2B customers can be better served by other solutions.
Zendesk is a comprehensive cloud-based customer service desk solution with customizable tools.
The platform offers functionality for sales and support teams and accommodates extensive customization. Its sales-focused features include CRM, sales call logging, contact enrichment and lead recommendations.
Zendesk enables companies to build a full customer service portal, knowledge base and online communities. Companies gain access to a customizable front-end portal as well as live chat features.
A knowledge management platform enables companies to better manage their support documentation, while custom automated workflows help teams better manage incoming support tickets.
The solution tracks support requests across web, mobile apps, and social media, and offers extensive collaboration tools and excellent security.
What Zendesk is missing:
As with Freshdesk, companies using Zendesk must go all-in on using the platform since much of its more powerful functionality requires conversations and engagement to occur within its own environment – and not the email platform of your choice.
Users require training and upskilling to gain the most from the platform, and setup of the solution can be quite technical.
Zendesk tries to offer it all, but does every team truly need so many features – especially considering the ballooning costs of using the full functionality?
Key Features To Look For In Your Email Management Software
Companies seeking the support of a customer service email management tool should ensure their solution of choice has at least the following functionality:
- Easy integration with Outlook or Gmail
- Analytics into individual and team mailboxes for teams working in Gmail and Outlook email environments
- The ability to track email reply times and set goals on shared and individual mailboxes
- Data about email volumes per mailbox, peak times, responsiveness, and more.
- The ability to generate scheduled reports as well as custom reports
- Access to message logs for deeper analysis
- The ability to close conversations with customers without a separate ticketing system
Best Email Management Software for Your Sales and Customer Teams (A Recap)
While each of the customer service email management solutions we discussed have outstanding features and can contribute greatly to improving a company’s handling of customer service and sales requests, only one solution can easily integrate with either Gmail or Outlook without the need to adopt and learn an entirely new platform.
Freshdesk offers a feature-rich customer service solution that integrates various customer-facing channels and powers interactions with AI-chatbots and other collaborative tools.
Zendesk’s all-encompassing solution that enables companies to build a full customer service portal, knowledge base and online communities and offers great support to both customer service and sales teams.
However, both solutions demand extensive internal process changes to fully utilise the benefits of their respective platforms. For most companies, this means additional training and change management, as well as additional costs for training and deployment.
Timetoreply is the ideal solution for companies that want to gain actionable intelligence into their customer and sales teams’ email activity. Our solution is a powerful addition to companies’ existing email activities that requires no process changes or costly deployments.
Within minutes of activating timetoreply in your Gmail or Outlook email environment, managers can start gaining a more granular view over average reply times, conversations, inbound mails, how quickly requests are resolved and much more.
Without the need to migrate team email activities to a new platform or conduct training to get customer-facing teams up to speed, timetoreply easily slots into existing processes and generates value from the first moment.
Getting started is as easy as clicking here to start a no-frills 15-day trial that will let you experience the benefits of data-driven customer communication.